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US and allies say Taliban has assured people can leave Afghanistan – World News

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WASHINGTON: The United States and 97 other countries said on Sunday that they would continue to issue travel documentation to foreign nationals and designated Afghan citizens who wanted to leave Afghanistan, and they expected Taliban to stand by their assurance that such evacuees could leave.
“We are all committed to ensuring that our citizens, nationals and residents, employees, Afghans who have worked with us and those who are at risk can continue to travel freely to destinations outside Afghanistan. We have received assurances from the Taliban that all foreign nationals and any Afghan citizen with travel authorization from our countries will be allowed to proceed in a safe and orderly manner to points of departure and travel outside the country. We will continue issuing travel documentation to designated Afghans, and we have the clear expectation of and commitment from the Taliban that they can travel to our respective countries,” a statement issued by the countries said.
“We note the public statements of the Taliban confirming this understanding,” the statement added. Taliban’s chief negotiator, Sher Mohammed Abas Stanekzai, had reportedly announced on Friday that the group would not stop people from leaving Afghanistan, no matter their nationality or whether they had worked for the United States during the 20-year war.
It was not immediately clear why India is not signatory to the statement that included several US’ NATO allies and many developing countries. China, Russia, and Pakistan also did not sign on.
Some US officials have said Taliban assurances in this regard are positive but others are more leery. “No one here trusts the Taliban. No one here is counting on any words the Taliban offer. What we are focused on is actions,” US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told CNN when asked about the evacuation. He however said US has “substantial leverage” to ensure American and others can leave after the August 31 deadline





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